ABC: Obama Takes The Lead In The Superdelegate Race


[Illustration by ALEX FINE]

ABC: For the first time this campaign season, Barack Obama has surpassed Hillary Clinton’s support among superdelegates, according to the ABC News delegate estimate. Sen. Obama, D-Ill., picked up two superdelegates this morning giving him a new metric to tout in addition to his current commanding leads in pledged delegates, popular votes, states won, and money raised. Rep. Donald Payne, D-N.J., switched his endorsement from Clinton to Obama and Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., endorsed Obama. DeFazio was previously uncommitted. With these endorsements, Obama has the support of 267 superdelegates and Clinton has 265 superdelegates. Every news organization’s superdelegate count is a little different because it is an imperfect science. Since October 2007, the Political Unit has continuously reached out to the nearly 800 superdelegates to determine their candidate preference. We also reach out regularly to the Obama and Clinton campaigns for their superdelegate lists and work to confirm any that they include on their lists. Clinton’s advantage among superdelegates was once massive and has been dwindling steadily since Super Tuesday, when she was ahead by over 60 superdelegates. MORE

UPDATE: Barack Obama all but erased Hillary Rodham Clinton’s once-imposing lead among national convention superdelegates on Friday and won fresh labor backing as elements of the Democratic Party began coalescing around the Illinois senator for the fall campaign. Obama picked up the backing of nine superdelegates, including Rep. Donald Payne of New Jersey, a member of the Congressionalracecard.jpg Black Caucus who had been a Clinton supporter. In addition, the American Federation of Government Employees announced its support for Obama. The union claims about 600,000 members who work in the federal and Washington, D.C., governments. Obama, who won a convincing victory in the North Carolina primary and lost Indiana narrowly on Tuesday, has been steadily gaining strength in the days since. Clinton also gained a superdelegate. The developments left the former first lady with 271.5 superdelegates, to 271 for Obama. Little more than four months ago, on the eve of the primary season, she held a lead of 169-63. MORE

UPDATE: A day after many observers declared it nearly impossible for Sen. Hillary Clinton to overtake Sen. Barack Obama to win the Democratic presidential nomination, Clinton told USA Today, “I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on.” As evidence, the story said, Clinton cited an Associated Press article “that found how Sen. Obama’s support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me… In the Wall Street Journal on Friday, Peggy Noonan, a former Reagan speechwriter and decidedly not a member of the liberal blogosphere, wrote, “To play the race card as Mrs. Clinton has, to highlight and encourage a sense that we are crudely divided as a nation, to make your argument a brute and cynical ‘the black guy can’t win but the white girl can’ is — well, so vulgar, so cynical, so cold, that once again a Clinton is making us turn off the television in case the children walk by.” MORE

SALON: It would be awful to see the Clintons depart this campaign with the stain of racial division among Democrats as their legacy.realmccain-cover.jpg Over the past several months they have found themselves standing against the ambitions and talents of the first black American who could become president. In a situation that demanded sensitivity and caution, both they and their associates have too often spoken and acted carelessly. That the same charge can plausibly be made against the Obama camp does not absolve them. MORE

RepublicanElephant_1.jpgHUFFPO: On Monday, Arianna reported that John McCain told her he had not voted for George W. Bush in 2000. Today, both The New York Times AND The Washington Post published articles with sources confirming John McCain had indeed told Arianna and others at an event that he did not vote for Bush in 2000. From the Post: “[McCain] was going on and on about how horribly unqualified and untested Bush was, how the campaign had attacked his family,” said Whitford, a registered Democrat. “Someone said, ‘If he’s so terrible, why did you support him?'” McCain replied that as a member of the GOP, Whitford added, he always intended to back the party’s nominee. Then, the actor said, someone asked McCain whether he had cast a vote in favor of Bush.”He put his finger up to his lips, shook his head and mouthed, ‘No way,'” Whitford said. MORE

RepublicanElephant_1.jpgRELATED: At the same time that former West Wingers Brad Whitford and Richard Schiff were stepping forward to say that they too had heard John McCain say that he didn’t vote for George Bush in 2000, McCain was grabbing a shovel and digging himself deeper with yet another denial. Appearing on The O’Reilly Factor, McCain told O’Reilly, “I voted for Bush in 2000 and 2004.” MORE


“The main problem in any democracy is that crowd-pleasers are generally brainless swine who can go out on a state & whup their supporters into an orgiastic frenzy — then go back to the office & sell every one of the poor bastards down the tube for a nickel a piece. Probably the rarest form of life in American politics is the man who can turn on a crowd & still keep his head straight — assuming it was straight in the first place.” — Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, Fear & Loathing On The Campaign Trail


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